The Alamance County Historic Properties Commission was established in October 1977, and has been involved in numerous preservation and educational projects since then. A summary of some of these projects is below.
Countywide survey of historic sites and properties
Over 600 sites were identified and inventoried during the first survey, conducted during 1978 and 1979. A survey update conducted in 2002 added over 100 additional sites to the inventory. To date, the historic sites inventory consists of over 700 sites, of which 163, or 23%, have since been demolished. In 2008 planning staff completed full GIS mapping of every site, both active and demolished, which will aid in identification and preservation efforts. Planning staff are currently working on updating the GIS map to reflect recent inventory additions and changes.
Published ‘Alamance County Architectural Heritage’
This 1980 publication highlighted historic sites identified during the first survey. Hundreds of copies have been sold. Planning staff is currently working on publishing an updated copy.
Assisted in the addition of over 20 historic sites and districts to the National Register of Historic Places
The Commission provided varying levels of assistance, from review to sponsorship of applications, on several National Register listings. Most recently this included the listings of the Old South Mebane Historic District and the Mebane Commercial Historic District.
Designated 11 historic sites and districts as Local Landmarks
The Commission awarded Local Landmark status to 11 sites within their jurisdiction, and aided in the designation of additional Local Landmarks within the City of Burlington.
Established County Historic Marker Program
Developed approval process for historic markers initiated by private individuals or organizations. Through this program the Commission has supported the placement of several local historic markers, including Freedom’s Hill Church, Pleasant Grove High School, St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, and Uncle Eli’s Quilting Party.
Provided technical assistance on historic restoration projects
Provided assistance to the Alamance County Board of Education for the restoration of the McCray School, and was subsequently awarded a Gertrude S. Caraway Award of Merit from the Historic Preservation Foundation of North Carolina for the project. Provided technical assistance to Guilford County on the restoration of Brick Church and Hawfields Church in planning the move and restoration of a one-room Hawfields School and Post Office dating from 1880. Provided assistance on the adaptive re-use of Glencoe Mill Village, Saxapahaw Mill, and Captain James Williamson House.
Conducted countywide surveys
Conducted a survey of abandoned cemeteries and inventoried over 300 cemeteries. As part of the survey, discovered abandoned Stoner’s Cemetery, performed comprehensive survey of grave sites, and assisted in establishing an endowment fund for further research, repairs, and maintenance.
Completed a study of log structures in the county, of which 14 sites were approved by the State of North for nomination to the National Register of Historic Places.
Conducted an archaeological study of local Native American sites. Two sites of significance were identified and investigated further.
Assisted in research for local history book, ‘Shuttle and Plow’
Co-sponsored the commissioning of a new published history of Alamance County, ‘Shuttle and Plow,’ timed to coincide with 150th birthday of the county. Also assisted local historian authors Bill Vincent and Carole Troxler with historical research.
Discovered and documented Clapp’s Mill site
Discovered site of previously unknown Revolutionary war battle and memorialized history of site. Produced educational materials for presentation to school children. Commission received award from American Association for State and Local History for the discovery and memorialization of the site.
Celebrated 200th anniversary of Battle of Lindley’s Mill
Commission produced film of reenactment of Battle of Lindley’s Mill and developed educational materials for school and citizen groups. Also organized celebration of commemoration of anniversary and design and dedication of memorial and approved request to erect grave marker to identify mass gravesite on site.
Commemorated life and death of Dr. Charles Drew
Organized placement of memorial marker at site of Dr. Drew’s death in Alamance County. Over 400 people attended the dedication ceremony. Also compiled scrapbook of news releases and materials pertinent to memorial, which was donated to the County Library.
Dedicated memorial for Pyle’s Defeat
Researched the battle location and designed and dedicated a memorial marker. Also organized the commemoration ceremony.